Ypsi artists seek to open studio, gallery, and shop for fellow creatives

Ypsilanti is home to many creators and creative business owners, and two local artists are hoping to build a space for them to make, sell, and teach in the heart of downtown. Artists Amanda Moore and Alexandria Daniels are collaborating to open a membership-based studio with space for open studio hours, workshops, a shop of local art, and opportunities for groups to gather to build community. They've launched a GoFundMe campaign to support the concept, known as Bloom Studio.

Moore, a long-time Ypsilanti resident, says she and Daniels had been wanting to work on a collaborative project to bring together and help support other local artists. She says reaching out to the community ultimately led them to the idea of a studio space with open hours for artists of all disciplines.

“We met with the idea that we would be working together on something,” Moore says. “We didn’t know exactly what at that time, but we had hopes and dreams of something exciting to help artists.”

Daniels, who also owns and operates the jewelry business Boho Haze Clay, says she wanted to explore the idea of having a storefront for her own business. She hopes Bloom Studio will provide more artists opportunities to sell their work through a gallery space and a consignment model. She hopes the studio can help local artists feel less isolated and more supported by their community.

“We want to be that space where people feel safe getting their feet wet in this career and receive support without intimidation,” Daniels says. “We both know the struggles and nuances of this field. We aren’t just running a gallery to run a gallery.”

Moore and Daniels met through the Ann Arbor Sunday Artisan Market, and both agree that their artistic and professional experience will allow them to effectively run workshops and consult new artists. They also hope that their space can be used by local creative groups, like writing or knitting clubs, to further strengthen Ypsi’s artistic community. Partnerships with local businesses and organizations, such as Ypsilanti Art Supply and Atelier and Ypsilanti Community Schools, are also in the works, according to Moore and Daniels. 

“As artists in this area, we see that a lot of artists are lacking a third place to find resources and support to run workshops, or apply for art shows,” Daniels says. “We have a big network of local artists that we have great relationships with, and people are excited about having a space where they can feel safe, seen, and valued.”

The project’s GoFundMe page launched on Feb. 26, and Moore and Daniels hope to open Bloom Studio officially on May 3. The campaign has raised just over $1,500 of its $10,000 goal since launching, and Moore hopes to have the gallery space open by May 1 for visitors to see the space and learn more about upcoming events and services.

“We’re starting small and humble with what we currently have,” Moore says. “We want to make sure we have the backing and support we need to be as successful as possible.”

To keep up to date on the project, follow Bloom Studio on Instagram.

“We want to show artists in the community you can have stability [and] sustainability through your work. You don’t have to sacrifice your creative passion,” Daniels says. “The thing we’re most passionate about is focusing on the community here.”

Rylee Barnsdale is a Michigan native and longtime Washtenaw County resident. She wants to use her journalistic experience from her time at Eastern Michigan University writing for the Eastern Echo to tell the stories of Washtenaw County residents that need to be heard.

Photo courtesy of Alexandria Daniels and Amanda Moore.
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